Apple's New Educational Initiative

Yesterday, from a high school in Chicago, Apple announced the rollout of a new initiative to leverage Apple technology to improve education and show the world how Apple products can be used in the classroom. One of Apple's goals during this presentation was to show that it can compete with the educational technology that its main competitor Google, especially from an affordability perspective, which is of the utmost importance for schools and students. Last year, Google Chromebooks were estimated to have about 50% of the educational personal computing market, up from just 9% in 2013. One big reason for this is that Chromebooks cost $149 compared to iPads, which start at $329 and can go up to $799 for some models, such as the 12.9 inch iPad Pro. Even with the student discount in place, Apple's new initiatives yesterday will still cost in excess of $400 for the iPad, keyboard, and stylus combination, all tools that were front and center in Apple's presentation on how to use technology. This included educational opportunities such as a virtual frog dissection, which could provide opportunities to students that they otherwise may not have had access to because of costs involved. Another big part of the presentation was focused on how Apple technology can boost creative education, with the rollout of Everyone Can Create, a suite of apps and technology that are meant to help students make music, videos, and art. 

Do you think that the state of Michigan should look into contracting Apple's technology for its schools? Do you think this technology is still too expensive, and instead Google's technology is a better option in the educational system? How can we continue to leverage the power of technology to aid in K-12 education, in an age where most students are using technology for non-educational purposes and will continue to use technology as they get older? I look forward to hearing what the caucus thinks about how Apple's announcement and Google's existing initiatives can be used to improve education in the state of Michigan.